i. in which i learn how to fall.
it's just a step forward.
it's just a breath:
it's the whisper of wings; the ghost of a spiderweb across my fingers.
it's the white noise that sings along my skin, and the cool air on my lips.
i can breathe blue skies and winter and white sunlight
and the silent sounds of summer trail along my neck to tangle in my hair.
i can close my eyes to the distance
and fall into the sky.
ii. in which i learn how to let go.
it's just a movement of muscle.
it's just a pause:
a bud unfurling over years;
decades dragged into seconds.
it's the sound of static; the hum of your fingertips across mine.
it's the simple synchronicity of white pressed to white; intertwined.
i have to let our hands fall apart some day
before the heat of my heart melts your smile to quicksilver.
or i can press my lips to your eyes, dear,
and hold you all the tighter.
iii. in which i learn how to cry
it's just a cell gone wrong.
it's just decay:
dust settling into your old bones;
tarnished with sepia memories.
it's the hard muscle of your heart; the silent smile of your eyes.
it's the skeleton frailty of your hope that shatters my strength.
i can reach higher than you, now,
but years behind me a small girl still stretches for your hand.
i can hold us together, anchored to my heart
and keep you standing.